Vancouver International Children's Festival switches gears to stream Kids Fest Pop Up

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      The 2020 Vancouver International Children’s Festival won't be happening on Granville Island next week due to social-distancing measures.

      But fest organizers have announced a free streaming program called the Kids Fest Pop Up happening in its place.

      From Tuesday to next Sunday (May 26 to 31), it plans to broadcast one show and one workshop per day on its Facebook page.

      “We couldn’t let the cancellation of the 2020 Vancouver International Children’s Festival stand in the way of planning something special for all the children and families,” said the event's artistic and executive director Katharine Carol in the announcement today. “While we were obviously sad and disappointed that we couldn’t proceed with the festival as planned, we’re thrilled that we’ll be able to bring great shows and workshops to families.”

      The shows and workshops will be a mix of both pre-recorded and live streaming segements. Artists include beatboxer RupLoops, whose The Human Radio show kicks off the first day of celebrations at 3:30 p.m.

      Elsewhere, drag artists Peach Cobblah and Isolde N. Barron, who made a splash at last year's fest with their show Parents Are a Drag, will stream their new COVID-19 show Home Is a Drag, featuring their own toddler, on May 31 at 1:30 p.m.

      “The one thing we as artists are deeply craving during this complicated time is ways to still connect meaningfully with our audiences, and, in particular, with the young people we haven’t been able to see,” said Dave Deveau, who performs as Peach Cobblah, in today's announcement. “We're thrilled to reinvent the show and explore how drag queens fare in isolation at home with a two-year-old. It's fun and upbeat and just what a family needs.”

      Other shows include Visible Fictions’ stop-motion Papergee and the Spider (May 27 at 3:30 p.m.) and the birdsong- and birdhouse-driven dreamworld of White (May 30 at 10 a.m.) and 

      And workshops range from a stop-motion animation class at 4 p.m. on May 27 to an origami lesson on May 30 at 11 a.m.